On what grounds does Article 15 of the Indian Constitution prohibit discrimination? Indicate the way the concept of ‘Special protection’ has qualified this prohibition, and contributed to social change.(200 words)

Art-15- Prohibition of discrimination

15(1) No discrimination on the grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex or place of birth or any of them. Applies exclusively to matters within the control of the State.


Prohibits any discrimination at public places. Objectives are to eradicate the abuse of Hindu caste system. Applies both to state and private individual.
15(3) Provisions for protecting Women & children.
15(4) State can make special provisions for the advancement of the socially and Educationally backward classes. This was introduced by 1st Amendment act 1951.

Special protection/Protective discrimination is a set of measures designed to overcome the barriers to equality faced by women, religious and linguistic minorities, and other disadvantaged sections of the society and to improve their economic status by compensating for past and present discrimination.

Special protection is able to help our society is by gaining the acceptance of different cultures. One can argue that a minority has the same rights as any other non-minority because they are guaranteed constitutional rights, but one can argue that non-minorities do not have the full understanding of what minorities go through in their lifetime and though they are given the same rights, they are not given the same respect and equal opportunity. “Affirmative action is simply a tool in the pursuit of that enduring nation interest, equal opportunity,” states President Clinton.

Special protection brings people away from discrimination and advances them towards equality. When defining an equal society, we must ask if our society is representing every man and woman, including minorities. Affirmative action is able to give people this equal opportunity while compensating for past discrimination for minorities.

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